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Warning to keep a weather eye

By Mark Beale

WHITSUNDAY residents are advised to keep abreast of weather warnings, with the possibility of a cyclone crossing the Queensland coast.

A cyclone warning for the Gladstone area was issued by the Bureau of Meteorology yesterday due to a tropical low in the Coral Sea that may develop into a cyclone as it moves in a south-westerly direction towards the Queensland coast.

Bureau of Meteorology spokesperson Jess Carey said at this stage the system wasn’t expected to track any further north than St Lawrence, keeping the Whitsundays on its northern and “least affected” side.

“But as the low moves down, it’s also dragging the monsoon trough down [with it] so there’s still the potential for rain, but nothing that Mackay, Airlie Beach, Bowen and Proserpine haven’t seen many times before at this time of the year,” he said.

The Bureau will be issuing updates on a six-hourly basis for now, and all marine operators in the Whitsunday region are advised to be ready to activate severe weather contingency plans.

The Regional Harbour Master is also monitoring the weather situation and will advise further action as necessary.

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